THE FIRST LESSON: Jeremiah 31:7-14
Thus says the Lord:
Sing aloud with gladness for Jacob,
and raise shouts for the chief of the nations;
proclaim, give praise, and say,
"Save, O Lord, your people,
the remnant of Israel."
See, I am going to bring them from the land of the north,
and gather them from the farthest parts of the earth,
among them the blind and the lame, those with child and
those in labor, together;
a great company, they shall return here.
With weeping they shall come,
and with consolations I will lead them back,
I will let them walk by brooks of water,
in a straight path in which they shall not stumble;
for I have become a father to Israel,
and Ephraim is my firstborn.
Hear the word of the Lord, O nations,
and declare it in the coastlands far away;
say, "He who scattered Israel will gather him,
and will keep him as a shepherd a flock."
For the Lord has ransomed Jacob,
and has redeemed him from hands too strong for him.
They shall come and sing aloud on the height of Zion,
and they shall be radiant over the goodness of the Lord,
over the grain, the wine, and the oil,
and over the young of the flock and the herd;
their life shall become like a watered garden,
and they shall never languish again.
Then shall the young women rejoice in the dance,
and the young men and the old shall be merry.
I will turn their mourning into joy,
I will comfort them, and give them gladness for sorrow.
I will give the priests their fill of fatness,
and my people shall be satisfied with my bounty,
says the Lord.
How dear to me is your dwelling, O Lord of hosts! *
My soul has a desire and longing for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh rejoice in the living God.
The sparrow has found her a house
and the swallow a nest where she may lay her young; *
by the side of your altars, O Lord of hosts,
my King and my God.
Happy are they who dwell in your house! *
they will always be praising you.
Happy are the people whose strength is in you! *
whose hearts are set on the pilgrims' way.
Those who go through the desolate valley will find it a place of springs, *
for the early rains have covered it with pools of water.
They will climb from height to height, *
and the God of gods will reveal himself in Zion.
Lord God of hosts, hear my prayer; *
hearken, O God of Jacob.
Behold our defender, O God; *
and look upon the face of your Anointed.
For one day in your courts is better than a thousand in my own room, *
and to stand at the threshold of the house of my God
than to dwell in the tents of the wicked.
For the Lord God is both sun and shield; *
he will give grace and glory;
No good thing will the Lord withhold *
from those who walk with integrity.
O Lord of hosts, *
happy are they who put their trust in you!
THE EPISTLE: Ephesians 1:3-6,15-19a
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every
spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, just as he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the
world to be holy and blameless before him in love. He destined us for adoption as his children
through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will, to the praise of his glorious
grace that he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.
I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love toward all the saints, and for this
reason I do not cease to give thanks for you as I remember you in my prayers. I pray that the God
of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as
you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is
the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the
saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe.
THE GOSPEL: Matthew 2:13-15,19-23
After the wise men had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, "Get
up, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is
about to search for the child, to destroy him." Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother
by night, and went to Egypt, and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what
had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet, "Out of Egypt I have called my son."
When Herod died, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt and
said, "Get up, take the child and his mother, and go to the land of Israel, for those who were
seeking the child's life are dead." Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother, and went to
the land of Israel. But when he heard that Archelaus was ruling over Judea in place of his father
Herod, he was afraid to go there. And after being warned in a dream, he went away to the district
of Galilee. There he made his home in a town called Nazareth, so that what had been spoken
through the prophets might be fulfilled, "He will be called a Nazorean."